Save Money, Reduce Risk with an Upgrade to Microsoft Dynamics Business Central Version 14 BEFORE October 2020
Editor’s Note: The information in this post has been updated since the publish date. In September 2020, Microsoft announced a change in their support policy for Dynamics 365 Business Central 14. The announcement states that Microsoft will provide continued support for customers on Business Central 14 until October 2021. Please read Seven Reasons You Should Upgrade From Dynamics NAV to Business Central 14 for details to this update.
If you are on Microsoft Dynamics Business Central (BC) version 13 or earlier, this blog is for you.
Microsoft has a license policy, called N-2 (N minus 2). This policy has always been enforced; it’s just now become more important than ever to understand the ramifications before BC17 comes out in the Fall of this year.
N-2 means that a license can only activate keys from the most currently released version minus 2 major versions. So, currently, if you purchase a BC16 license (the most current major BC release) you can buy BC14, BC15, and BC16 keys. You cannot buy BC13 keys, for instance.
You can only purchase the product in the version that is in your keys in your license.
BC17 comes out around the end of September 2020 (see Figure 1 for a release roadmap). BC17 minus 2 is BC15. BC15 is the first version that will not allow you to modify base Microsoft C/AL, mainly because C/AL is gone in BC15. Also, the desktop client is gone, so, you will be forced to use the Web Client.
Figure 1 – Microsoft Dynamics Business Central Release Roadmap
Why Commit to Business Central 14 Instead of the Latest Version?
While this might not seem like a big deal because progress is always good, and in the upgrade world, being on the latest version is utopia. So, why am I, an Upgrade Expert, advising you to commit to BC14 now, when it’s already 2 versions from the latest, greatest version of Business Central?
Great Question. Because, like your company, for instance, not everyone is ready for pure AL and the Web Client only. However, you still don’t want to fall so far behind that you are stuck perpetuating your old C/AL environment, adding more code debt in the process.
Most companies have customizations written in C/AL, some that rely on legacy scales, printers, scanners, and peripherals that just won’t be easy to move straight to AL. And all C/AL code needs to be re-written to AL. If you wait until BC14 is no longer available for purchase, you will find yourself going from point A to point C without the safety net of going to B first.
Reduce Risk and Disruption
Why not get to the latest version of BC that does support C/AL and AL, go live on BC14, and then incrementally refactor your C/AL code at your leisure and your timeline? After all, BC14 will be supported by Microsoft until the Fall of 2023. So, you will get all the cumulative updates while you are refactoring.
You will decrease disruption to your business because you won’t have to worry about refactoring all your C/AL to AL in one upgrade, further adding risk and surprising costs in the middle of your project. If you wait until it’s too late, your next upgrade project will be over budget and definitely not on time. I’ve seen it, and it’s sad.
In our studies, we’ve found that, by doing an upgrade straight to AL with the Web Client, you will incur as much as 50% to 100% more cost. Even if it doesn’t cost more, why take the risk? In fact, I would argue that, even if it costs more to refactor incrementally, the mitigation of risk is worth the cost.
Your system has a finite, quantifiable delta between where it is now and the latest version of BC. Why add an infinite element of disruption and risk to the mix? Take action now. Purchase your BC license with BC14 keys before Oct. 1, 2020 if you are on BC13 or earlier.
ArcherPoint’s Upgrade Experts Can Help
Still not sure when and how to upgrade? ArcherPoint’s upgrade experts have years of experience doing hundreds of upgrades. Talk to us today…we can help!
As Microsoft Dynamics Business Central continues to evolve, having the ability to keep pace with the technology while overcoming the obstacles to upgrading is the important. Read this blog to learn more about ArcherPoint’s Stay Current Plan.
To learn more about upgrading, watch this video, Upgrading From Microsoft Dynamics NAV To Business Central: The Future Of Upgrades.
Still not sure if you should upgrade? To get answers to your upgrade questions, download this free eBook: Upgrading from Microsoft Dynamics NAV to Business Central: Everything You Always Wanted to Know…but Didn’t Know to Ask.
Or go ahead and request an upgrade quote today.